Top Things To Do and Visit In Gion

by GoWithGuide travel specialist

Gion is the most famous geisha area and sightseeing spot in Kyoto. Many tourists come here enjoying this area on foot. Walking along the street, stopping by small tea houses, sweets shops or restaurants.

Gion is also close to Kiyomizu-dera, one of the most famous World Heritage Site in Kyoto. Therefore, you can spend a day here from the temple, walking down along zaikas (Ninen-zaka, Sannen-zaka or Kiyomizu-zaka) to Yasaka Shrine. Wanna enjoy an elegant and slow relaxing atmosphere druing your travel?  Check out these top places when you visit in Gion and around the area.


Enjoy Kyoto at its Most “Kyoto-esque”: Gion
Gion is hugely popular with tourists for its bustling downtown streets.The famous Yasaka Shrine is on the outskirts of Gion. Maiko and geisha (known locally as geiko or geigi) entertain guests with songs and traditional Japanese dances, and the houses where one can enjoy the company of geisha, gathered together in the entertainment district, are well known.

Experience Japan’s Traditional Arts in Gion If you say “Kyoto-esque,”many tourists probably imagine maiko and geisha. Even though the figure of a geisha dressed in kimono dancing a traditional dance for a gathering in a tatami-roomed tea house can often be seen in movies and elsewhere, it is said that this image is uniquely representative of Kyoto.Gion preserves that image, and, even within Kyoto, is itself a popular sightseeing destination. Click here for more information.



Kiyomizu-dera – Kyoto’s most popular tourist attraction
Kiyomizu-dera is a Kannon temple where the goddess Kannon is worshipped. Among Kyoto’s temples, Kiyomizu-dera has a particularly long history, and is a registered World Heritage site. It is one of Kyoto’s most popular tourist attractions.

Enjoy the National Treasures and Important Cultural Properties of Kiyomizu-dera Kiyomizu-dera was constructed on Mt. Kiyomizu (Mt. Otowa). The main temple at Kiyomizu-dera, which is also referred to as the “Kiyomizu-dera stage,” was rebuilt by Tokugawa Iemitsu in 1633. The main temple building, constructed early in the Edo period, is a National Treasure. It is supported by more than 100 keyaki (Japanese Zelkova) trees and not a single nail is used. Jojuin, in the northern area of the temple grounds, features the Moon Garden, which...more information

Business hours
- Everyday (6:00 AM ~ 5:30 PM )
- Adult: 300 JPY
- Child: 200 JPY

Gion Festival

Photo by Planetyze

The 1100-year-old Gion Festival, an Intangible Cultural Property, that brings the charm of the Yamaboko Junko parade
The Gion Festival which has a grand history lasts for one month. Lavishly ornamented gigantic 12t yamaboko festival floats are paraded through the streets of Kyoto, and the festival is performed to pray for the prevention of disasters.

The Gion Festival, preserving a 1100-year-old tradition The Gion Festival, one of Japan’s three great festivals, is a religious celebration that has continued at Yasaka Shrine for 1100 years, and for 1 month from July 1st to July 31st every year, it’s held at the shrine and in the central area of Kyoto. Starting with the Yamaboko Junko parade and the Shinko Festival, various events unfold. At the Shinsen-en Temple where a giant garden of the ancient capital existed, 66 halberds representing the 66 territories within Japan at the t...more information

- Free

Yasaka Shrine

The guardian deity of the Hanamachi (geisha quarter) providing hope through protection against evil, the warding off of disease, and prosperity of business
A shrine located close to Hanamachi that was the origin for Kyoto’s Gion district. It has been popular as a place to earn the grace of the gods through protection against evil, warding off of disease, business success, matchmaking and beauty among other things.
A venerable shrine for the Gion Festival Yasaka Shrine was established in 656, approximately 150 years before the transfer of the capital to Kyoto. Affectionately called Gion-san, it can be visited from a walk through Hanamachi. Its guardian deity is known as Susano Kushi-inada Hime Yahashiranomiko-kami. Revered from all over Japan as the capital underwent development, even today, it has 3000 branch shrines all over the nation. The Gion Festival which is the great annual summer festival for Kyoto which lasts for almost a month from July 1st... more information

Business hours
- Everyday
- Free


Enjoy exploring temples and typical Kyoto-style cobblestone streets
In the east side of Kyoto is Higashiyama, so-called because of the many mountains there. And there are many temples which have beautiful gardens as the Ginkakuji since they were former health resorts for nobles and samurais.
Enjoy a Stroll through Higashiyama The Higashiyama district is dotted with many temples. Among these temples, Kiyomizu-dera and Fushimi-inari Taisha are well known, with even more ancient history than Heiyan-kyo (what Kyoto was called for 794 years when it was Japan’s capital) itself. Also, on your next visit to Kyoto, we would certainly ask you to visit the main temples gathered together in Higashiyama, which are representative of Higashiyama Culture, in which Japan’s traditional culture, including tea ceremony and flower arrangi...more information


Need help planning your itinerary to Gion?

It can be difficult navigating Japan without speaking or understanding the Japanese language or transportation system, which is why I recommend having a private guide or joining a private tour group. I recommend you to get one from Triplelights! Not only do they have excellent guides (and over 1,000 to choose from) that cater to your every need, but they also offer you the best customer service as possible to make sure you’re in the right hands.

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